16:00 - 16:30
Ending geoblocking: This content really ought to be available in your country

Short thesis

We've all encountered geoblocking – digital borders preventing us from accessing certain services on the web based on our current physical location. On a global network and within a unified Europe, this practice is nothing short of anachronistic. Let's examine why these digital walls are built – and how we can tear them down together.


The European Commission has presented measures to curb geoblocking as part of their "Digital Single Market" strategy. The legislative fight around the issue has begun, and it needs your participation.

In this talk, I'll examine the prevalence and impact of geoblocking measures, the various reasons why services employ them, and the arguments of lobbies fighting to preserve the practice. I'll outline who geoblocking most negatively affects today, including linguistic minorities and long-term migrants. I'll make the case for a world in which access to information and media isn't limited by the geographical boundaries of the political entity in which a reader happens to be located. I'll point out potential legal solutions to reduce the practice, assess which of them are achievable today and explain the EU plans on the topic.

Finally, I'll put the issue into its larger context of the upcoming EU copyright reform, update you on what to expect and outline a few other key questions you can get involved in.